Berlinale: Programme

Film file

Competition (out of competition)

Sage femme

The Midwife

Ein Kuss von Béatrice

Olivier Delbosc (Producer), Catherine Frot (Actress), Martin Provost (Director, Screenwriter), Catherine Deneuve (Actress), Moderation: Robert Fischer

Press Conference at full length
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Claire is a single mother with a grown-up son. She’s a dedicated midwife who is completely wrapped up in her job. Although the maternity ward where she works is to be closed, she turns down a job offer from a larger clinic because she cannot reconcile their methods with her own ideas about midwifery. In the midst of all this upheaval she receives a phone call that rekindles memories of her youth. Béatrice, her late father’s former mistress, asks to meet her. Béatrice is a true bohemian – loud, colourful, egocentric and completely different to the focussed, helpful Claire. The younger woman asks herself why, after all these years of silence, Béatrice has suddenly decided to approach her for help, and is at first less than enthusiastic.
Martin Provost has made a name for himself with powerful portraits of women (Séraphine, Violette). Sage Femme revolves around the encounter between two headstrong women, perfectly cast with two of French cinema’s grandes dames. A dramatic comedy about the need for change, and the question of whether steak, pommes frites and red wine is really what one would call a healthy lunch.

Martin Provost

France / Belgium 2017


117 min · Colour


Catherine Frot (Claire)
Catherine Deneuve (Béatrice)
Olivier Gourmet (Paul)
Quentin Dolmaire (Simon)
Mylène Demongeot (Rolande)


Written and directed by
Martin Provost
Director of Photography
Yves Cape
Albertine Lastera
Grégoire Hetzel
Sound Design
Ingrid Ralet
Brigitte Taillandier
Production Design
Thierry François
Bethsabée Dreyfus
Assistant Director
Juliette Maillard
Brigitte Moidon
Production Manager
Christophe Desenclos
Olivier Delbosc
Executive Producer
Emilien Bignon
Jacques-Henri Bronckart, Olivier Bronckart
Versus Production, Liège
France 3 Cinéma, Paris


Martin Provost

Born in Brest, France in 1959, this director and writer began his career as a film and stage actor. He was a member of the Comédie-Française before devoting his career exclusively to writing and directing. He published several novels and made two short films before presenting his debut feature as a director with Tortilla y cinema. He gained international renown with Séraphine which won seven Césars.


1990 J'ai peur du noir; short film, writer and director 1992 Cocon; short film, writer and director 1997 Tortilla y cinema; writer and director 2003 Le ventre de Juliette; co-writer and director 2008 Séraphine; co-writer and director 2011 Où va la nuit (The Long Falling); co-writer and director 2013 Violette; co-writer and director 2017 Sage femme

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2017

Produced by

Curiosa Films

World sales

Memento Films International